Friday, November 21, 2008

Here's Your Box...Go Start Your New Life!

In my last post, my life was in the process of flying off the rails. Nowadays, the rails are gone completely.

I lost my job, just in time for both the holidays and the greatest American economic collapse, the last time our economy collapsed? I can't keep track any more.

I'm still finding all sorts of silver linings. The afternoon I got the "Here's your box, but try to think of this as an opportunity!" talk at work, Lemmonex and I barreled through much of my leftover birthday champagne, and sang along with the infamous "Hot Sundae" video on the "Jessie's Caffeine Pill Downward Spiral" episode of Saved by the Bell.

Good news is always abundant. My dad's health is improving rapidly. The lovely Lady Brett hooked me up with a temp job (one perk of being an admin: you can always, always temp). My friends rock. And my boyfriend has been a truly amazing source of support.

But things are still stressful, and I'm not much for the emotion-barf. So I'm staying on hiatus for a bit longer. I put up this post to explain why I'm not posting, like a Mobius strip of self-indulgence. I'll be back soon...bad times don't last forever.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Me for a Day? Good Heavens, WHY?

The dog didn’t eat my password.

I haven’t been sprawled on a beach somewhere, drinking fruity girly drinks. Sweet alcohol gives me a stomachache, and I’m at high risk for skin cancer (thanks for being Australian, Mom! I’ll also have you to thank for the cataracts, the paranoia, and the Welsh inbreeding).

I haven’t been off experiencing fabulous things, just so I could brag about them later. Instead, I’ve been weathering one of the more hellishly oddball storms of my 32 years.

First, my hours (and salary) got chopped in half. Then, I got sick and my adorable 200-year-old doctor put me on Anthrax Antibiotics for ten days. Then, my dad’s cyborg surgery had complications, and I spent a week semi-planning to semi-move to North Carolina, for the semi-time being. Oh, and I woke up Sunday morning with a cold. Like the cherry on top of a bad-luck sundae, I’m hacking and sneezing and not altogether pretty right now. And, oh, I almost forgot to mention that Aunt Flo has stopped in for a visit. (TMI? Never! But, "not pregnant" is always one for the plus column.)

Of course, there are a lot of good things happening in my world. Good people, the four bottles of Champagne rattling about the bottom of my fridge, cupcakes for breakfast, the new slats on my bed, the uh...other thing going on that I'm not telling you about. Nyeah.

But, overall, my Optimism-Meter is running low, and I don't want to torture y'all with my sad-sack not-currently-amusing existence. Life needs to get a hell of a lot funnier before I'll have much to say.

Or, you people could step up and be funny. To that end, I’m recruiting guest posters, at least until I can get my act together. (Well, not COMPLETELY together, because y’all live to watch me metaphorically faceplant my way across every aspect of my life.) Or you can write me for advice - I do love telling y'all what to do. Either way, I'm outsourcing this blog for a bit. So step on up and be my Indian call center, my Malaysian child laborers, my Temp-a-Tronic no-wage workers.
Submissions should go to

Thursday, November 06, 2008

My Failed Marriage Has No Market Value

I spent my 32nd birthday as the good Lord intended. Hungover, and trying to sell off the detritus of my failed marriage.

I went up to Friendship Heights to attend a jewelry and precious metals purchasing event. Picture Antiques Roadshow without the cameras. Picture crusty grandmas with the dinner plates that belonged to THEIR crusty grandmas, used to hold generations of depressing butterscotch candies. Picture taking a number, sitting down, and waiting as the woman next to you frets and frets until you can feel your blood pressure screaming for mercy.

Eventually, my number was called. I sat down across from a really adorable 12-year-old buyer who looked like he’d been bussed in special from the local jeweler magnet school.

Buyer: And what do you have today?
Me: It’s a wedding set, 18 karat white gold, from an upscale jeweler in Bogota. I’ve included the certificate and the receipt.
Buyer: It’s very clean.
Me: That’s because it’s been in that box for several years. I do take it out every divorceaversary, place it in the center of my floor, and do a tribal dance of joy to celebrate my freedom.
Buyer: And how does that work?
Me: Pretty well. Except when I don’t get my left leg exactly right, and it rains for the next three days.
Buyer: Ah. So, here’s the bad news. The stone is smaller than what we’re looking for, and we don’t really resell wedding rings unless they’re antique.
Me: You mean people aren’t clamoring for jinxed wedding sets?
Buyer: No, at least, not ones with a small center stone.
Me: I knew I should have let my ex buy me a bigger ring. Next time around, I’ll be more materialistic.
Buyer: So, basically, we’d break this down and sell it for parts. Like a Buick.
Me: Or a dead body. And how much are these parts worth?
Buyer: If I make you an offer, you’ll be insulted.
Me: I guarantee I’ll be amused, not insulted, by whatever offer you make.
Buyer: $125.

You know, I almost did it. Just so I could frame that $125 check and hang it up on my wall.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Happy Birthday to Me...Thanks to the American Voter

I jolted awake at 2:00 in the morning, another year older (I'm 32 today) and with a fabulous birthday Obama victory!

Thanks, America. It's just my size, exactly to my taste, and totally makes up for those times you chose a president based on who you'd rather have a beer with. (And then, to complete the cycle of stupid, you decided you'd rather have a beer with a teetotaler. Sigh.)

I spent Election Night sprinkling myself in free booze at the Qorvis the point that I said "excuse me," to the wax Obama. I also wore that Washington classic, a name tag. Except mine said, "Anne Chovy," and my date's said, "Benjamin Dover." I also told an FCC employee that he ought to auction off the Janet Jackson boobie screenshots on Ebay. I figured I'd get as much out of the end of Year 31 as I possibly could.

I'm spending today off work, lounging, and possibly a little hungover. More tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

A Silver Lining in My Cloud of Superiority

I’ve been looking for silver linings. Upsides. The good news. There has to be something positive in having my salary cut in half.

I can vote in broad daylight. My precinct is in the projects. If you follow the crime reports, look for the number of robberies and beatdowns that happen within one block of my polling location. Yeah…I lived in Bogota and I’m worried.

I can obtain amusing second jobs. I’m debating applying to be a CVS clerk. While I’m worried about possible permanent damage to my IQ, I’ve always wanted to wear a smock.

Daytime drinking. Who’s up for starting happy hour at 2:00? Give me a call, I’m down for it.

Not having money is the fastest path to being better than everyone. My impoverished state allows me to sit here on my cloud of superiority and mock you soulless consumerist nitwits. I can’t believe how much useless crap you buy. You are all that is wrong with America!

My apartment is the cleanest it has ever been. My refrigerator is stocked, I have all the time in the world to make Crock-Pot comfort food, and I’ve even ironed some clothes.

Bad days build character.

I get to keep my health insurance.

Half a job is better than no job at all.
My friends rock.

I think it’s going to be OK.

Photo credit: Jeremy Brazell